Sourcing Actors For Your Short/Independent Films : Dos and Dont’s

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Short films are now getting it’s own place among the people and also among the filmmakers. Every technical aspect of a film is concentrated to be perfect in short films. What if everything is good and not the actors who carry the script? This is on where actors fail and knowing the importance of an actor in a short film.

A short film runs for a few or several minutes where you have a very limited time to narrate a story. Actors in a short film are very important to make the film a good film. Where do short film makers find difficulties in selecting actors? Actually this can be categorized into two.

Sacrificing the original script for actors.

Short film makers tend to get interesting stories and scripts on their discussion and they find that they lack experience and money which affects it’s Making. One factor where everything is sacrificed is on an actor. Filmmakers who are not able to find suitable actors for a good script decide on doing a very mediocre script with friends who can act for them. This compromise affects their graph and learning on a large scale.  If u don’t get actors for your script, trying in many places and searching through professional sources will surely help in finding good actors. But they don’t do this and they compromise their whole script for the actors available which is a major drawback. This leads to a very mediocre film which is based on a few youngsters and happenings around them. Will be boring right?

Placing people for the wrong character.

When people don’t get an apt actor for a role, they just try to fit in some guy or girl into a character, which won’t suit them at all and say a story. Even though if the script has a heavy weightage, these actors, who are misplaced in a movie spoil the whole experience.

Instances like placing a 25-30 year old guy for a character of age 55-60 by just applying white colour to his hair will never help. That gives only irritation to the viewers.

In the short film KAARA, starring Sai Pallavi’s sister Pooja Kannan, young people will be made to act as aged people by just showing them with white hair. Just seeing them on screen shown as aged people just pulls us away from the film and we hesitate to invest on the film.

In a short film named crazy roommate,  the only 2 youngsters who appear in the film has done really well where they work out good humour with their reactions and dialouge delivery. This is made very important in making short films.

Finding the perfect actor only will help to bring out the good in the film. Do not just get away with applying white hair or placing bad actors in characters. This is never going to help.

How to search or source for actors?

First of all, never let bad actors do roles in your films. That affects the when of the movie. There are many ways to get actors. One- if your script needs just youngsters and if the script is good enough, you can shoot with your friends who are interested to act. But make sure they act well for their role.

Two-  There are many actors who are waiting for a chance to prove themselves. They are active on Facebook groups, websites for actors etc. Select your perfect person for the character by spending extra time in this. Few may not ask for a pay because this is a learning for them too. When people have their own life and they are into acting, they won’t fail because they know what it is to act and make a film. They do things with whole heart and dedication.

Three- Many theater actors who are talented are everywhere. Search for actors for any character of any age through these theatres. Koothupattarai, thiraipattarai etc. Are some of the theatres where you can find good actors in all age groups.

Select only aged people for aged characters in your short so that your short gives what you want to give. Many youngsters act really well who even save the script.

Yes, actors will ask for a pay, few may not. You have to be ready to invest something on good actors because they are the ones who bring out your whole vision. Do not restrict yourself in doing this. At least provide them with whatever is available or whatever can be done. Things will come out really well.

Filmmakers out there, don’t just add salt and pepper to an youngster and show them as if they’re aged. Don’t just put someone in your film just because he/she is your friend. Focus on getting good actors who can save your plot. Because, good actors really can save the plot.


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